The Young Minds of Tomorrow: How Today’s Teachers Can Inspire Their Students to Reach New Heights Reply

One of the most important and difficult aspects for a teacher is motivating your students. Any unmotivated student is one who puts a lot of effort into avoiding educational challenges other than coming up with solutions to tackling them. When such a student is given an assignment he or she will be quick to complain, “Is it necessary for us to do this?” Teachers who work with unmotivated students are faced with two main challenges. The first challenge is for the teacher to find out what it is that actually motivates the student in question. The teacher, in this case, has to be able to identify scenarios that the student responds to positively. Such situations can be used to foster the student’s interest. The second and most difficult challenge for the teacher is to change the student’s mindset into believing that if he/she applies effort into academic tasks, success will actually come their way. The following three methods can be used by teachers to motivate their students.

Create Real Life Lessons

Unmotivated students normally wonder ‘Do I really have to know this?’ Teachers have to be able to help them see how these classroom lessons can be applied in their lives outside the classroom. For example, teachers can use motivational speakers or motivational videos found on social media to encourage students on real life situations that they encounter on a day to day basis.

Simplify Academic Tasks

Some students normally find assignments too overwhelming, they then put forth very little effort towards completing them. Giving the student one step at a time tasks will be helpful. Simple step by step tasks may help the student gain confidence in himself or herself.

Seeking Further Training

Teachers should seek to acquire more knowledge and skills on leadership in order to empower their students. Enrolling for classes such as a master’s degree in educational leadership or other educational related courses can be a start. The teachers can be able to apply the lessons learned to the students’ challenges and empower them into performing better. In return, the student is motivated to keep up the good job.

Teachers will find it important to develop and maintain good relations with their students for them to remain motivated. The teachers are required to go an extra mile in meeting individual student needs for the student to be able to realize their full potential and how to keep moving towards greater heights.


Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball. Connect with her on Google+and (@LizzieWeakley).


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com.

Opting out of Public School: Non-Traditional K-12 Education Options Reply

Public school is not always the right fit for every student. When looking into alternatives, families want to know which style of education will best suit their child. Whether leaving the public school system or never entering it at all, there are many options when it comes to non-traditional K-12 schooling.

Homeschooling

Homeschooling is when a child is educated primarily by their parent at home. Homeschooling has come a long way in recent years as more and more parents have sought out alternatives to public school and were unhappy with their local private school options.

Many homeschoolers follow a set curriculum and others piecemeal their studies, pulling from different resources. Homeschooling allows the family to learn together and work on projects as a team, allowing the student to feel supported and assume a leadership role in a safe environment.

It is an incorrect and unfortunate stereotype that homeschoolers never leave home and are woefully un-socialized. Most homeschool families take part in classes, clubs, groups, co-ops and the like to give the homeschooled student a well-rounded education. Many states even have homeschool sports teams and gym classes.

Online Schooling

Accessibility to technology and the internet has allowed for a rise in children being educated at home through an online school program. Many homeschool parents choose to augment their curriculums with an online program such as Connections Academy.

Online programs are taught by experienced teachers who follow a curriculum. They teach lessons, interact with their students, give tests and quizzes and keep records of the students’ grades. The services that online schools provide is extremely helpful when it comes to taking some of the pressure off of the homeschool parents’ shoulders.

Unschooling

When a parent wishes to erase the influences of the public school system, time spent unschooling may be the ideal option. Unschooling does not involve any set curriculum or standards. It allows students to freely follow their interests without the constraints of assignments, grades and schedules.

Private Education

Private education is most commonly found at religious academies. Families who are seeking out a more faith-based education may find their schooling match with a private religious school. Parents of non-religious students considering religious education should be aware that the religion themes run strong and will be prevalent throughout the student’s educational career while studying there.

While far less common, there are some secular private schools scattered throughout the country. Sometimes going under the names of Democratic schools, Waldorf Schools or Montessori Schools, they all offer a unique approach to non-public education. With an emphasis placed on nature studies, independence and creativity, secular private schools attract many non-traditional students and families.

Military School

Military school used to be the thing of threats made by parents to misbehaving youth. Now, it is a viable education option for students looking for high-quality academics and post-graduation opportunities.

Military schools have a low dropout rate compared to that of public schools. They also boast excellent sports teams and the chance to learn independence and respect. Many military schools are boarding schools where the students live on the school’s campus, but others may offer schooling services to local students without requiring that they live on campus.

Non-traditional educational routes are gaining in popularity every year. Public schools are traditionally under-funded and over-crowded, which results in many parents looking for alternatives for their child. With so many quality options available, there is bound to be one that will provide the ideal educational environment for your student.


About the author: Anica is a professional content and copywriter from San Francisco, California. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Main Issues Students Face When Changing School Reply

A lot of families often change their locations for a living, especially if it concerns the military families who depend on the father’s redeployment. You might think it is easy and fun because changes can only bring the good for the family, however, there is one issue that is especially hard for the kid when s/he changes the living place – the school. Changing schools is never a good experience, and this article is going to consider some of the main issues students face when changing the educational institution.

Making New Friends

Making new friends is not an easy thing to do especially if the child is an introvert. Usually, any child becomes attached to the old friends s/he used to have and to part with them is a whole tragedy. Breaking this link can lead to the new acquaintances and new experiences, however, what if not? What if he is going to be bullied in the new educational institution and would never find his/her best friend? Your kid might find some kids who s/he will be happy to spend time with, but can they be called real friends? The 2014 report by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement in Georgia showed that schools with the high percentage of mobile students had fewer kids in gifted education programs.

Adapting to New Teachers

School problems do not end on changing the educational institution itself, but the teachers as well. The kid is lucky if the school transfer happens at the beginning of the year so that s/he can get ready emotionally for it. But what if it takes place in the middle of the year? Your kid is used to the teachers s/he had, and now s/he has to get acquainted with all of them again? It is an absolutely horrendous experience unless your kid is a true extrovert. There is a unique degree of trust that appears between the student and the teacher, but if the student changes the schools often, s/he will never be able to get it.

Adapting to New Classes

Classes may differ from school to school: if the child makes a change of school in the middle of the year, it may become a whole catastrophe for him/her. Is s/he supposed to continue what s/he has studied in the previous educational institution? This is another tough question in terms of changing the educational institution. And the best way out for the kid would be if s/he can continue studying what he started in the previous school. Otherwise, s/he is going to have education problems. The University of Chicago made a research on 13,000 students that showed that the kids who changed their schools more than five times by sixth grade would be a year behind their peers.

Adapting to New Cultural Aspects

Of course, it does not concern situations when the family moves to the neighboring state, but if it used to live in the extreme West and now it is moving to the extreme South, there might appear some cultural differences. And for the kid who is experiencing stress anyway, it will be just another matter of being depressed. It can be little things like slight differences in food, or it can be major things like differences in language: what if the kid moved to a Spanish-speaking area? S/he will not understand a single word in Spanish that is why this can become another barrier to assimilation.

Passive Attitude to the After-School Life

It is amazing if the child is active and takes part in the after-school life. But what if he does not feel like participating in the sports matches or even going to the school parties? The depression in college students can appear for no reason, let alone if s/he changes the educational institution. Trying to make him/her more active may become useless if s/he does not feel like doing it. That is why the only way out is to find out what the problem is, try to solve it and expect the child get back to life again. The study that was made in 1990 made an experiment on 10,000 students, and the study showed that mobile kids are 35% more likely to have bad grades and 77% – to have behavioral problems.

 


Working as a freelance writer for https://eduzaurus.com for less than a year, Nicole Cowart managed to become one of the best writers on the website. Her secret is simple: she just takes all the projects and does them perfectly well, no matter if it is a case study in Nursing or a PowerPoint presentation for mathematics. She is the best in everything she does, and the clients adore her.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.


 

Work And Play: 3 Degrees That Would Allow You To Travel Regularly Reply

Starting a career doesn’t mean you have to settle down. Frequent travel is becoming an occupational feature for professionals in a variety of industries. As private companies and public organizations continue to expand their reach on a global scale, there are many different types occupations that require travel on a regular basis. Individuals who crave an on-the-go lifestyle with plenty of opportunities to check out new destinations should consider one of these 3 degrees to prepare themselves for their dream job.

Diplomatic Studies

Virtually all nations on the planet employ numerous diplomatic staff to maintain relationships with other countries and international organizations, but there is also a rising demand for the skill-set in the private sector. Students of diplomatic studies often focus on a particular aspect of their field as they advance their degree, like international commerce, issues regarding terrorism or cyber diplomacy. Students who are interested in a career in diplomacy should also consider learning one or more foreign languages to establish niche expertise. Schools like Norwich University offer advanced degrees to students, including a diplomacy degree with several specialization options.

Accounting And Business Management

The language of finance and business is spoken around the globe. Companies frequently span national borders to take advantage of new markets and grow their enterprise even more. Businesses need educated financial professionals to study and connect with suppliers, potential acquisitions and other entities associated with their employer. Public accounts employed by regulatory or other government agencies can also find themselves on the road frequently. They may travel to different locations to conduct thorough reviews and audits of a particularly organization, which requires access to physical files. Business management consultants also spend a lot of time on the road, since they usually work on temporary contracts with a number of different companies.

Journalism And Public Relations

Whether you work for the media or with them, there are many positions that involve travel to a wide range of destinations. Journalists may spend months or years in other countries reporting on diplomatic developments or an emerging news story in the region. Professionals who bend their career towards public relations may also find themselves traveling to manage events, connect with media influencers and perform other essential responsibilities for their clients. Individuals interested in this career may pursue a degree in journalism, public relations or similar communications program.

If you want travel to be a part of your professional life, then there are plenty of options to consider. While there will certainly be opportunities to enjoy fresh scenery and exciting destinations, these careers are also demanding and can be stressful from time to time. A career on the road is not for everyone and can have a negative impact on family life, so it’s a good idea to discuss this decision with loved ones before launching off on a new adventure.


Emma is a freelance writer currently living in Boston, MA. She writes most often on education and business. To see more from Emma, say hi on Twitter @EmmaSturgis2 or Facebook.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Classroom Security: 5 Ways Schools Can Improve Safety Reply

Whether you’re an educator, administrator, or otherwise employed by a school, safety is a prime concern. When staff and students are endangered, the quality of education suffers. Parents are also impacted. Here’s what schools can do to be more secure.

 

1. Tighten building and campus security.

Police can identify vulnerable areas on school property and recommend upgrades. The school complex can be surrounded with fences made of welded wire or tubular steel, topped with spikes. This type of barrier is hard to cut and climb, as opposed to conventional chain link fencing. Also, avoid placing objects near fences that facilitate climbing.

Ensure that school property is well lit. Appoint guards at outside doors, and designate separate doors for entering and exiting buildings. Also, install cameras and intercoms at these locations. Assign a guard to patrol the premises.

Always have adults stationed in hallways, stairwells, bathrooms, and lunchrooms, as an authoritative presence. Keep playgrounds well-supervised, and monitor activity at bus stops.

 

2. Devise and practice emergency action plans.

Train school staff in using the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and Incident Command System (ICS). Should a national disaster occur, the NIMS directs school administrators to federal agencies and departments appointed to respond. The ICS details procedures for communicating and safeguarding school occupants, buildings, and equipment.

Your school should follow ICS directives during:

  • Disease outbreaks
  • Students reported missing
  • Lab accidents involving hazardous materials
  • The presence of criminals and hostile intruders
  • Fire and weather disasters
  • Incidents on campus property and at school events, such as graduations, sports games, festivals, and drills

The Department of Homeland Security recommends that local and state governments adopt two codes devised by the National Fire Protection Administration. Entitled “NFPA 1600” and “NFPA 1561,” these standards specify actions to take during emergencies. The first code describes the requisites of an action plan while the second explains how to meet them.

You can help your school administration to respond effectively to a national emergency by reviewing the NIMS, ICS, NFPA 1600, and NFPA 1561. Implementing these directives can also protect your institution from litigation.

The Crisis Prevention Institute offers a free download of lifesaving tips for emergency preparedness. Information is based on research by Safe Havens International. To practice action plans, conduct drills that mimic emergency situations. Training should involve students, teachers, custodians, and administrative staff.

Keep building blueprints available for emergency responders. During a campus emergency or disaster, they’ll need to know the school layout and location of fuses and utility equipment.

 

3. Use protective technology and layouts inside classrooms.

Install panic alarms at teachers’ desks that sound in the Administrative Office. Also, equip each classroom with an intercom system that connects with Administration. Another option is giving staff two-way radios.

Teachers should position their desks far from doors. Increasing distance gives teachers more time to act against an intruder. Also, use furniture near the door to form a hallway into the room. Bookcases and cabinets can serve as a wall, corralling a perpetrator.

Portable furniture can barricade a room, preventing an attacker from entering. At a school in a dangerous neighborhood, a teacher may want to keep the classroom door locked, except at the start and conclusion of periods.

In case of evacuation, teachers must know how to operate classroom windows. If they can’t be opened, teachers need tools to break windows. All building occupants should be aware of the nearest exit. Also necessary is familiarity with overall building layout.

 

4. Involve school counselors.

Bully Prevention Programs

Counselors can implement the PATHS curriculum, a program that reduces aggression and behavioral problems in children. Information and activities are provided for both students and parents. Schools receive evaluation kits by which they can measure success.

The PATHS curriculum calls for counselors to hold sessions two to three times weekly, for at least 20 minutes per class. Counselors receive all materials, lessons, and instructions to conduct the program. Students learn empathy expression, self-control techniques, problem-solving, peaceful conflict resolution, and ways to have positive peer relationships. The curriculum also teaches skills in listening, reading, and writing.

PATHS includes a model for preschool and kindergarten children. This curriculum teaches emotional awareness, self-control, problem-solving, and social skills. It also promotes confidence and friendships. Materials are provided for reading, writing, storytelling, science, math, drawing, singing, and thinking skills.

 

Intervention

Counselors can hold student meetings, urging kids to band together to face off bullies. Hecklers often back down quickly when met with verbal opposition. Victims should promptly report berating behavior. Although they may fear a bully will attack harder if identified, assure victims they’ll be protected by authorities.

Counselors must emphasize that students should never counter aggressive behavior with violence. The first response should be standing beside a harassed student. Next, supporters should tell a bully to back off, and warn of being reported.

Another way to thwart abuse is asserting the admirable qualities of the targeted student. Meanwhile, bystanders must quickly bring badgering to the attention of school authorities.

When bullies are identified, they should be brought to the school advisor for counseling. Administration may also need to enforce discipline. Heckled students need the counselor’s support.

 

Recovery

In the aftermath of a crisis, counselors should provide therapy to affected students. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps kids mentally and emotionally process their reactions. This type of therapy involves replacing negative thought patterns with a positive mindset.

Also taught are coping strategies to counteract the effects of being attacked. For example, kids may need to rebound from being labeled fat, stupid, or ugly. Then, they can recover self-esteem, confidence, and strength.

 

5. Foster a close-knit school community.

The best way to deter violence, drugs, and bullying is to maintain a supportive environment. In low-income communities, quality schools fill both material and emotional needs. Many institutions offer free meals, clothing, counseling, health screenings, and onsite medical care to students and families.

Teachers who show genuine concern for students tend to receive their cooperation. Kids who feel valued are more likely to succeed academically and socially than those treated poorly by school staff. Ignored students may go to great lengths to get attention.

You can promote unity at your school by offering classes that teach multicultural perspectives. Kids learn to respect and admire differences, rather than ridicule them. Also, invite parents to events that celebrate cultural diversity. Examples are concerts, fairs, craft workshops, and meals featuring international cuisine.

Teachers should identify student strengths, talents, and interests, and find ways to develop them. When educators model virtues like patience, empathy, and forgiveness, students follow suit.

The Good School Toolkit can help you create a caring school culture. Material is divided into three segments, spanning an 18-month period. School staff can choose from 60 activities designed to:

  • Improve classroom management
  • Effect non-violent discipline
  • Develop mutual respect
  • Promote learning

Among the engaging materials are cartoon booklets and posters. The Good School Toolkit is available as a free download.

Safe Education

To protect staff and students:

  • Tighten building and campus security
  • Devise and practice emergency action plans
  • Use protective technology and layouts inside classrooms
  • Involve school counselors
  • Foster a close-knit school community

Attending school should prompt eagerness rather than fear. When students feel safe, they can focus on learning. A supportive school environment prepares kids to succeed in life. You’re a vital cog in the wheel of the education system. What a profound difference you’ll make!


Dixie Somers is a freelance writer and blogger for business, home, and family niches. Dixie lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and is the proud mother of three beautiful girls and wife to a wonderful husband. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Speedy Degree: Best Tips to Help You Finish Your Program In Record Time Reply

speedy-degree-best-tips-to-help-you-finish-your-program-in-record-timeWhile college can be a great experience, every extra semester you spend taking classes will cost quite a bit of money. This has left many people wondering what they can do to complete their courses and graduate as quickly as possible.

Take One or Two Extra Courses Each Semester

Even though graduation rates are up, many students now take college classes for six or more years. One of the most straightforward ways to reduce the amount of time you spend in college is to add one or two classes to your schedule every semester. Some colleges require students to sign waivers or maintain a certain GPA before taking additional classes.

Test Out of Your Basic Classes

Depending on what institution you have been accepted to, you might have the option of testing out of basic classes. This is especially popular among students who have recently taken advanced classes in high school. Those who complete difficult classes in high school should be able to bypass various college courses by taking a handful of competency tests.

Start an Online Program

Trying to complete college as quickly as possible can be very stressful when taking traditional courses. An online program could save you hours every week by cutting back on how much time you must spend driving to and from class. The work that must be done for these classes can also be completed around your own schedule instead of a rigid schedule set by the school. There are online programs for pretty much any degree out there. There are some for education-related careers, engineering, and science. There are even accelerated msn programs that you can participate in online if you’re wanting to go the healthcare route.

Take Classes Throughout the Year

Summer school used to be something that students dreaded, but off-season classes are an absolute necessity for many college students. The vast majority of colleges and universes offer ongoing courses with as many as six full semesters throughout the year. While it can be stressful, taking classes nonstop could halve your total time spent in school.

Obsessively Organize Your Study Area

With so much work to be done in the next few years, you must become obsessed with organization. Every student needs a very organized study area where they can relax, take a deep breath, and then focus on the task in front of them. This area should be free from distractions and exclusively used to get work done.

In addition to these few tips, you can also speak with your counselor about earning credits with your job. Many companies now offer internship and externship programs to students in exchange for course credits. This could potentially save you thousands over the course of your college career.


Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake. You can follow her on twitter and LinkedIn.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

Top of the Class: Why Diversity Matters in Your Classroom 3

top-of-the-class-why-diversity-matters-in-your-kids-classroomLearning the importance of diversity should be a part of every child’s education. There are several ways that diversity could benefit your students’ experience. Here are a few of the main reasons why diversity matters in your kid’s classroom and what you can do to encourage more.

Cultural Awareness

If your classroom is full of kids from other cultural backgrounds, they will have a better opportunity to learn about the world. Learning about different languages, traditions, and other important cultural aspects can shape any child’s mind for the better. And what better way to learn than from their friends in the classroom?

Sensitivity toward Others

Diversity also teaches children how to be more sensitive toward others. Some cultures and religions are known to have certain rules of etiquette that may be different than yours and your child’s, and learning about these rules and how to respect them will foster a better sense of compassion toward other people.

Better Preparedness for a Higher Education

Being exposed to a diverse school setting at an early age can help make your child more prepared to earn a degree in higher education in the future. Your child will have the chance to learn new life skills from people of different backgrounds, which can be especially useful when the time comes to start applying for colleges.

Improved Social Life

Children in diverse school settings have a better chance of making a variety of new friends. Having a strong network of friends will enable your son or daughter to learn better communication and problem-solving skills and can even boost your child’s self-esteem.

Sharper Creative Thinking Skills

Those with a masters in higher education will often say creative thinking skills can be improved when in a diverse environment. Your child will be able to look at problems from different angles and perspectives and come up with more effective solutions. Diversity will teach your child how to draw upon different influences to solve problems and not just view these issues through a single-focus lens.

Combatting Cultural Stereotypes

All too often, people tend to adopt stereotypical views of different cultures, and these negative beliefs can create animosity among different groups. If your child is able to learn about other cultures from an early age, they will be less likely to adopt these stereotypical views later on.

Start by Learning Diversity Yourself

The first step to successful diversity in your classroom begins with you. Learn about various cultures and points of view, particularly those that belong to your individual students. Knowing their holidays, beliefs, and values will give you a well of knowledge to pull from and help students find out these things for themselves. Encourage students to ask each other questions about their values.

Appreciate Individuality and Cultivate Respect

Knowing is only half the battle. You must foster a spirit of acceptance and individuality in your classroom. Encourage your students to be proud of their individual values and cultures, but to accept others’ as valuable as well. This means forbidding judgmental remarks and, as appropriate, gearing your lessons toward multiculturalism as needed. As you plan your curriculum, add perspectives from other cultures into your teachings; celebrate your students’ traditions and allow them to explain aspects of it that are important to them. This will give an ongoing reminder to your students that everyone comes from diverse circumstances, and that diversity is something to be proud of and embrace.

Being in a diverse school setting can help your students. Having the ability to understand people of different backgrounds while learning new life skills can be used to build a brighter future filled with tolerance and understanding.


Dixie Somers is a freelance writer and blogger for business, home, and family niches. Dixie lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and is the proud mother of three beautiful girls and wife to a wonderful husband. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

How to Utilize Your Degree to Help Save the World Reply

how-to-utilize-your-degreeYou may not be able to literally save the world, but you most likely want to use the degree that you’ve obtained to make a difference. You want to be a light in the lives of other people and a source of positivity and inspiration. The following are four degrees that you can use to perform your world-saving activities and some ways that you can make use of them:

Degree in Diplomacy

People who graduate from diplomacy programs have a special set of skills that they can use for people in this country or another. They are masters at communicating with other people and solving a wide variety of problems. Such people would be best in jobs such as publicists, foreign outreach specialists and project grant stewards. Project grant stewards take control of certain projects and help people to get the funds they need for them. You can make a difference in any of those positions.

Degree in Nursing

A nursing degree can help a person to serve others and “save” others in many ways. A person who has this kind of degree can work in a hospital, veterinarian’s office, nursing home, mental health institution and a number of other places. Such a person can also work as a home health aide and provide people with encouragement and assistance with everyday duties. Families truly appreciate someone who can help them care for their ill loved ones. It would be an amazing task for you if you have a heart of gold.

Human Relations Degree

A human relations degree is good for a person who wants to work as a counselor. Counselors can fit into a myriad of situations. Examples of some of the jobs that the human relations degree can get are jobs such as the guidance counselor at a school or the human relations specialist for an employer. This person serves others by helping them to achieve their goals and to deal with their conflict head on.

A Counseling Degree

Finally, a counseling degree is an amazing degree for someone who would like to “save” people who have problems that they need to work out. Counselors can work in private offices, institutions, online and more. Furthermore, they can help with domestic violence issues, substance abuse, childhood trauma and the like. They can assist with career goals and life coaching, as well.

The opportunity to contribute to making the world a better place is still available. Any of the above-mentioned degrees can put someone closer to achieving the tasks. There are even tons of other degrees out there that can help you change the world. This list is just scratching the surface.


Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She enjoys tennis and spending time with her family. Kara recommends looking into diplomacy programs for more information on degrees that can help save the world.

5 Research-Backed Actions that Will Increase Your Chances of Success in College Reply

According to data from the U.S. Department of Education, fewer than 40 percent of new college students graduate within four years and barely 60 percent graduate within six years.

People fail to graduate for so many reasons, but achieving success in college isn’t as complicated as most people think. The following five actions are proven by research to increase your chances of success in college:

  1. Join a Study Group

Fans of the Game of Thrones TV series are familiar with the saying, “the lone wolf dies but the pack survives.” This couldn’t be truer when in college, especially when it comes to studying!

One of the most important things you can do to help your chances of success in college is to join a study group. Research shows that being part of a well-organized study group can increase a college student’s chances of success; a particular study of 110 students documented an average increase of 5.5 points in the final exams of students who were in a study group compared to those who weren’t.

  1. Don’t Joke With Your Daily Sleep Requirement

Many college students believe that the key to success is to burn the midnight oil, but research disagrees.

Scientists have found that lack of sleep impairs attention and working memory, and that it can also affect attention and decision-making. Furthermore, researchers have found that sleeping right after you study is the best way to make sure you recall what you study.

Proper sleeping habits won’t only help you overcome college stress, it will also make recall — and as a result increase your chances of success in tests and exams — extremely easy.

  1. Be Active Involved in Your College Education

In a study of 25,000 college students, researchers found that students who spend 40 hours or more weekly on academic work are three times more likely to have As compared to students who spend 20 hours or less weekly on academic work. Researchers agree that active involvement is the most important factor that determines success in college.

While this sounds like bad news for part-time students, all hope is not lost. Effective time management can help you get a lot more out of your time; it also helps if you wake up earlier and work on college activities first thing in the morning. Researchers have found that the most early hours of the day are the most productive for most people.

  1. Develop Your Writing Skills

One of the most important skills you can develop to help you succeed in college is your writing skill. Not only will this make it much easier for you to write required essays, but it will also make your other assignments easier.

Research has linked writing and journaling with an improvement in communication skills (even verbal skills!). Researchers have also found that trying to explain a concept — either by writing or verbally — reveals our understanding of the concept, helping us discover and work on knowledge gaps.

You can develop your writing skills in numerous ways: take a formal writing training, use online resources to learn how to write, set up a blog, and make it a daily practice to write.

  1. Effectively Utilize College Resources

Very few students utilize college resources, but research has found that college resources impact student success to a great extent. A particular review of over 2,500 studies concluded that, “The impact of college is not simply the result of what a college does for or to a student. Rather, the impact is a result of the extent to which an individual student exploits the people, programs, facilities, opportunities, and experiences that the college makes available.”

Utilizing college resources was found to be especially effective if done in the first year of college. Make effective use of library resources, academic support services and experiential learning resources to increase your chances of success in college.


John Stevens is an entrepreneur and founder of HostingFacts.com, an online portal that reviews web hosts. He is a regular contributor to Standford’s blog, Business Insider, Entrepreneur.com and other major publications. Follow him on Twitter @hostingfactsj


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.

How Many Times Should You Take The GRE And When Should You Start? Reply

how-many-times-should-youThese days, many students are realizing that submitting GRE scores is a part of the graduate school application process. With this reality in mind, you may be wondering when you should start preparing for the GRE and how many times you should take it. Review the short outline below to obtain answers to these questions and more:

It’s Never Too Soon To Start

If you’re wondering when you should begin preparing for the GRE, know that it’s never too soon to start. Familiarizing yourself with the format and content of the exam can alleviate test anxiety and empower you to attain a higher score. As such, it’s a good idea to get started immediately. Luckily, there are a wide range of learning resources at your disposal. For example, companies like ETS, Barron, Peterson’s and Kaplan provide a wide range of test prep material you can use to study for the Verbal, Math, and Written components of the exam.

Taking online courses in the fields of English, Math, and Writing is another technique you can implement to prepare for the exam. If you’ve already obtained your bachelor’s in English, you may want to consider completing an online masters computer science program. This can make you a more competitive candidate for a grad school program while also sharpening your reasoning skills.

How Many Times Should You Take The GRE?

Before you decide how many times you should take the GRE, consider the following facts:

  • You can take the computer-based test once every 21 days.
  • You may take the GRE up to five times within one year.
  • If you cancel your GRE scores, the test that you took still counts towards the five annual test dates.

There are several reasons why an individual might want to take the GRE again or several times. Generally, the reason pertains to the score. In some cases, an individual might not have had sufficient time to prepare for the exam. When this happens, a substandard score may be the unwanted outcome. If you know that the score you’ve obtained is below the average score that individuals admitted into the learning institution attained, it’s definitely a good idea to retake the exam.

Keep in mind that you can take the GRE as many times as you want and submit your highest scores to the college in question. However, if you’re taking the test over and over to try to attain a perfect score, keep in mind that the GRE is not the only component of your application process. You’ll also want to concentrate on other critical elements like your letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, curriculum vitae, writing sample, etc.

If you’re serious about acing the GRE so that you can get into your dream school, now is the time to start studying. Review the information and instructions found in this quick reference guide to get on the path to an excellent score today!


Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from West Jordan, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.


All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.